Marni Yang explains why she allegedly gave false murder confession in prison interview

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LAKE COUNTY, Ill. (WLS) -- In a prison interview with her own defense attorney, Marni Yang explains why she claims she made a false confession for the 2007 murder of Rhoni Reuter and her unborn child. Reuter was the girlfriend of former Chicago Bears player Shaun Gayle.

Yang's own attorney did the interview as she seeks a new trial in the case.

"I made up everything I said," Yang said in the interview with her attorney.

Yang has spent the last 13 years in prison for killing Rhoni Reuter and her unborn child. Reuter's boyfriend and the father of that unborn baby was former Chicago Bear Shaun Gayle.

Yang's attorney, Jed Stone, claims there is no physical evidence linking her to the murder. Stone recently conducted an interview with Yang in prison, and controlled the questions being asked. He shared that interview exclusively with Eyewitness News on Wednesday.

RELATED | Marni Yang's lawyers call for Rhoni Reuter murder investigation to reopen, citing new video of Shaun Gayle

He said the strongest piece of evidence against Yang is the purported confession she gave to a friend who was wearing a wire.

"As soon as I saw that wire, I thought it was an opportunity to do it," Yang said. "I was not speaking to her, I was speaking to police through her."

Yang maintains she gave what amounted to a false confession because she said police were actually threatening to arrest her son for the crime.

"I was just not thinking, beyond putting a stop to what was happening to my children," Yang said. "I believed once the case got into the hands of the legal system it would be clear I did not commit this crime."

RELATED | Marni Yang's attorney says injuries on Rhoni Reuter's body prove she's innocent

Yang, 54, is serving a double life sentence at Logan Correctional center downstate. Her attorney is hoping a Lake County judge will grant a hearing to determine whether Yang can get a new trial. He said it's risky to put a client on video at this stage of the case, but he believes it's necessary.

"I think we need to win this case not only in court, but in the court of public opinion. It think it's time to tell the public why she confessed," Stone said.

During her time in prison, Yang has become a grandmother to a little girl she's never met. She said the very plot that she hatched to confess to save her children, now keeps her separated from them. She said the hope that she might get a new trial is what keeps her going.

"I go through periods of such deep depression that I don't know how to crawl out of it," Yang said. "Sometimes it seems like nothing can grow here. Everything I love, I'm separated from."

Yang's attorney said he provided the Lake County State's Attorney with a copy of the prison interview. The state's attorney has long maintained there is no doubt that Yang is guilty, which is why they continue to fight her efforts to win a new trial in court.

The state's attorney's office had no comment regarding the interview done by Yang's attorney.
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